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Nick Saban

Nick Saban wants to put an end to fake injuries in college football

Alabama head coach Nick Saban walks through the tunnel for season opener against Utah State
Photo comes via SEC Media Portal

Alabama head coach Nick Saban participated in an interview with Sports Illustrated.

He took on several topics, including the NIL culture, the new structure of the Southeastern Conference schedule, new rules coming to the collegiate game, and player safety. Saban is not particularly a fan of playing Tennessee, Auburn, and LSU as locked-in opponents, but the 71-year-old had something else to bother him. College football encountered some games in the last few seasons where players have faked injuries to gain extra substitutions and time to scheme up plays. Coach Saban wants fairness on the behalf of offenses and defenses, allowing both sides to make substitutions.

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“We never do it,” Saban said to Sports Illustrated on Alabama doing fake injuries.

“I think it curbed to some degree. But again, when you are doing that? People are going so fast that you can’t catch your breath and can’t substitute anybody. They could control it a little bit if they say a team makes a first down and then you get an opportunity to sub players on defense. That would be one thing. You can go fast if you want, but if you make first down, the defense [gets to sub]. Now, if [that defense] doesn’t sub, you can keep going fast.”

He is not against fast-paced offenses, but Saban wants to see things done fairly.

We have noticed how an offense can be in rhythm — running several plays at a time — but then a defense player falls on the field. The player may not be hurt, but he stays down which forces an injury timeout. It allows the defense to make substitutions and takes the opposing offense out of rhythm. The same thing has happened to a defense in rhythm shutting an offense down.

An offensive player would fall, get an injury timeout, and it takes the defense out of sync.

Saban wants to be clear that college football continues to end fake injuries.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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